William Gardiner (1808-1852) typifies the self-taught scientists who made substantial contributions to botany and natural history studies in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Pursuing botany as an avocation while employed as an umbrella-maker, he later published Twenty Lessons on British Mosses (1846) and The Flora of Forfarshire (1848).
The Flora was supported by subscribers and accompanied by a hand-written, bound volume of plant specimens, A selection of the native plants of Forfarshire; to accompany The Flora of Forfarshire.
This volume is part of the collections of the Life Science Library, the botany collections of which support and complement the research and collections of the Plant Resources Center.
Additionally, The Flora of Forfarshire was recently digitized and added to the university’s digital repository, Texas ScholarWorks, and is now available for perusal worldwide. View the online version here, and read more about the digitized version here.